A special election in Utah, a prescription drug initiative in Ohio, and more.
In case you haven’t heard, Virginia is electing a new governor today. But that high-profile, very tight race isn’t the only critical, or even interesting, vote drawing people to the polls.
A ballot initiative could test a new way of holding down prescription drug costs. Special elections could help switch party control of state legislatures. And the results could give some important clues about where things stand going into 2018.
Here’s a last-minute guide to a few lesser-known ballot initiatives and state and local elections across the country that don’t involve Ralph Northam or Ed Gillespie but are still worth watching.
Ohio is mulling a ballot measure on prescription drug prices
In Ohio, Issue 2, a ballot initiative, would require the state to pay no more for prescription drugs than the federal Department of Veteran’s Affairs, which typically gets discounted drugs. It will affect the approximately 4 million Ohioans who receive Medicaid or some other state-funded insurance.
Proponents of the measure — which includes Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) — say it’s a rejection of rising prescription drug costs and it will save Ohioans $400 million if approved.
Opponents, on the other hand, say the law would be difficult, if not impossible, to enforce because the state already negotiates lower drug prices with pharmaceutical companies and it can’t compare costs with the VA because negotiations are confidential. They also say the cost-savings estimates are overblown, or could potentially raise prices on people who have private insurance to offset the Medicaid losses. (The state budget office also couldn’t say for sure the measure would save money.)
You can’t avoid TV ads related to the Ohio Drug Price Relief Act, but their conflicting claims Read More Here